thLast year a line leapt out at me from, I believe, an MSN Money article: “Saving is the new sexy.”

I read it out loud to DF. His response: “It’s the old sexy as far as I’m concerned.”

That tickled me so much that I wrote both statements on a piece of scrap paper and taped it to my work station. Sooner or later, I knew, I’d be writing about this.

Finally I am, thanks to a survey from Ally Bank. It found that three out of four people believe it’s important for mates to share a similar financial philosophy. And the most appealing financial habit?


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thThe folks at H&R Block recently mailed out a couple of logo items for the 2014 tax season. Naturally I just had to turn mine into a giveaway – adding, of course, a few artistic touches of my own.

There’s a particularly high snafu potential this year due to the Affordable Care Act. Too, there was the customer service misstep by Intuit, which made major changes to the Deluxe version of its popular TurboTax software in a way some customers didn’t like. (H&R Block responded with an offer of a free replacement product; follow the link for details.)

So in advance of any issues you may or may not have, you should enter to win the 2014 Tax Season Survival Kit. It includes:


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thBloggers and readers in the Phoenix area: Wanna talk about money, midlife, millennials or ‘most anything else? Hope you can attend a meet-up on Saturday, Feb. 21.

The do will be hosted by me and my daughter, who blogs at I Pick Up Pennies. When I say “hosted,” what I mean is that we’ll be there and we’ll save you some seats.


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thEveryone complains about the boredom and the bad coffee. But have you ever thought about the potential hit to your finances?

The folks over at NerdWallet (I do love that name) sure have. According to “The cost of jury duty,” some 32 million people are called each year. Only about one-eighth of those actually serve – and those who do may wind up in the hole.

The article notes that in five major cities – Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, New York and Seattle – jurors earning minimum wage will lose anywhere from about $16 to $78 per day. That’s because companies generally have the option of not paying employees for days spent on jury duty.

Obviously lots of folks who get called are making more than minimum wage. If that’s the case they might have the financial resources to withstand the hit. But maybe they don’t, especially if they live in high cost-of-living areas or are the only people in their households who work.

Bonus: Imagine earning, say, $25 an hour ($200 gross) and seeing your income drop down to as little as $10 a day, which is what Seattle jurors earn. Ask me how I know.


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th-1Recently at the recycling center I found a few Box Tops For Education coupons in the mixed-paper bin. As I walked back toward my vehicle a woman rolled down her window and said, “Why are you going through the garbage?”

I told her I was looking for Box Tops For Education for my nephews’ schools. Also that I prefer to think of it as mixed paper.

The woman frowned. “Well, I don’t like it. Some of the stuff we throw in there is kind of sensitive. Private.”

Um. What?

It took me a couple of seconds to form a coherent response. “You should be shredding that stuff! If you throw personal information away without cutting it up you could have your identity stolen.”

She sniffed audibly, then drove off.

Readers: Do you ever throw away things like bank or credit card statements or health insurance info? If so, please stop it. Right now.


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